Central Metal Site Investigation
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Until 2016, the Central Metal site was used for recycling industrial scrap metal and manufacturing metal tanks. Central Metal and its predecessor, Damille Metal Supply, left piles of soil on the site over the years beginning in around 2000. One of the piles was tested and found to have hazardous levels of lead and arsenic. EPA tested the soil of residential yards near the site to see if lead, arsenic or other pollutants blew off site.
- Why is EPA Involved?
- What is EPA Doing Now?
- About Lead
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
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In 2018, EPA completed a Preliminary Assessment. In 2019, EPA began a Site Inspection to see if waste from the site blew off site and was a threat to human health or the environment. As part of the inspection, EPA tested the soil and groundwater.
EPA found a soil waste pile on site that had been packaged for disposal by the Los Angeles County Fire Department (LACoFD). The fire department safely disposed of the waste in an off site facility and told EPA that the pile was hazardous due to lead and arsenic. Lead, arsenic and other heavy metals can cause serious health effects if people are exposed to them at high levels.
EPA then used aerial photos to show similar piles were on the site since the early 2000s. When EPA tested the soil and groundwater, community members shared concerns that contaminated soil from the site was blowing onto their properties. In response, in 2019, EPA asked for permission to test the soil of yards in parts of the Walnut Park and Florence-Firestone neighborhoods near the site. These tests may show whether contaminated soil from the site blew onto nearby properties.
EPA met with community members and representatives in early 2022 to discuss the project. EPA went door-to-door to discuss soil testing with residents at selected properties in Walnut Park and Florence-Firestone. By July 2022, EPA selected the eligible properties for soil testing and scheduled testing. The residents of eligible yards for sampling received Access Agreements by mail and/or in-person. EPA reviewed the signed Access Agreements to decide how many of the eligible homes we could test.
In August 2022, EPA tested the soil of residential properties near the site to determine whether contaminated soil from the site has spread to nearby properties. Test results were analyzed at a lab and shared with property owners and/or residents in 2023. These properties were selected after residents of eligible yards received and signed Access Agreements. EPA only sampled the yards of residents who wished their properties to be included and where a suitable amount of soil was available for sampling. EPA did not sample properties where the owner could not be contacted or the resident did not wish to participate. Soil from residential and background testing was analyzed in a laboratory. EPA shared results with property owners and residents in March 2023 and included results in the Site Inspection Report (learn more about Site Inspection Reports).
EPA used the test results to see if the site:
- is eligible to be listed on the National Priorities List (NPL) for cleanup as a Superfund NPL site;
- is not eligible for to be a Superfund NPL site, but should be cleaned up by another EPA program;
- should be referred to the State of California for follow-up; or
- does not require any further action.
EPA published its findings in the Site Inspection Report in September 2023.
EPA tested the soil of 83 properties. These areas were selected because of their proximity to the Central Metal site and because of wind patterns in the area. Testing these areas may show if material from the site has blown off site. EPA will update the Los Angeles Department of Public Health, Communities for a Better Environment and Florence-Firestone community leaders on the status of this work.
- EPA will be available to answer questions of property owners and/or property residents about the soil sampling results from their yard.
- EPA completed a Site Inspection Report in 2023.
- EPA is following up with the property owners and/or residents of the properties that had elevated concentrations of lead and arsenic in their yard. EPA has offered to do additional sampling at these properties.
Testing is free, participation is voluntary, and data is strictly confidential (not shared outside EPA). No information about your property (including which yards are tested), or the individuals living on these properties, has been or will be included in public reports, nor shared with groups outside EPA.
Lead is a main contaminant of concern at this site. Lead is a toxic metal that is harmful if inhaled or swallowed. It affects multiple body systems and is particularly harmful to children under 7 years old, pregnant women, and nursing mothers. Here are things you can do to reduce your exposure to lead.
For more information about lead, visit:
- EPA's Lead Site
- EPA's Learn About Lead page
- EPA’s Protect Your Family from Lead in Your Home
- CDC’s Lead page
- ATSDR ToxFAQs™
- CDC's Blood Lead Levels in Children Fact Sheet
Los Angeles County Resources
Fact Sheet: EPA Completes Central Metal Site Inspection (pdf)
(745.6 KB, October 2023)
EPA fact sheet on results of the Central Metal Site Inspection Report.
Central Metal Site Inspection Report | Informe de la Inspección del Sitio Central Metal (pdf)
(17 MB, September 2023 | Septiembre 2023)
The Site Inspection Report addresses results from the site investigation and findings from on-site soil and groundwater sampling (Stages 1 and 2) and residential soil sampling in Walnut Park and Florence-Firestone (Stage 3). It summarizes what elements were considered for listing the site on the National Priorities List and why the site was found ineligible for listing. | El Informe de la Inspección del Sitio aborda los resultados de la investigación y los hallazgos del muestreo in situ del suelo y las aguas subterráneas (Fase 1 y 2) y el muestreo residencial en Walnut Park y Florence-Firestone (Fase 3). El informe resume los elementos que se consideraron para incluir el sitio en la Lista Nacional de Prioridades y por qué se consideró que el sitio no era elegible para incluirse en la lista.
Central Metal Site Inspection Report Attachments | Archivos Adjuntos del Informe de la Inspección del Sitio Central Metal (zip)
(763MB, September 2023 | Septiembre 2023)
The attachments include supporting documentation for content discussed in the September 2023 Site Investigation Report.
Central Metal Soil Sampling Postcard | Hoja Informativa de Colaboración de Plomo (pdf)
(362.3 KB, August 2022)
EPA postcard provided to residents whose yards were selected for soil sampling. The postcard describes the work EPA completed at residents’ yards, including each step of the soil testing process and what residents can expect next. | Tarjeta postal de la EPA proporcionada a los residentes cuyas propiedades fueron seleccionadas para muestreo de suelo. La tarjeta describe el trabajo que la EPA completó en las propiedades de los residentes e incluye cada paso del proceso de análisis del suelo y lo que los residentes pueden esperar a continuación.
EPA Walk Up Information Center Events | Eventos de Centro de Información sin Cita (pdf)
(1.6 MB, March 2022)
EPA postcard sent to residents that have yards eligible for soil sampling. The postcard announces days and times in March 2022 that staff will be available for eligible residents to get help with their Access Agreements, turn them in, and/or get more information about the sampling event. | Postal de la EPA enviada a los residentes que tienen patios elegibles para el muestreo de suelo. La postal anuncia los días y horas en marzo 2022 en que el personal estará disponible para que los residentes eligibles pueden recibir ayuda con sus Acuerdos de Acceso, entregarlos, y/u obtener más información sobre el evento de muestreo.
Central Metal Door Hanger for Door-to-Door Outreach | Un Aviso Colgado en la Manija de su Puerta del Muestreo de Suelo Residencial de Central Metal (pdf)
(433.5 KB, February 2022 | febrero de 2022)
EPA door hanger left at residents’ home if not available during door-to-door outreach February 24-26, 2022. | Un aviso colgado en la manija de su puerta fue dejado por la EPA en las casas de los residentes que no estaban disponible durante el alcance puerta a puerta del 24 al 26 de febrero de 2022.
Central Metal Site Update Fact Sheet | Hoja Informativa Sobre la Actualización del Sitio de Central Metal (pdf)
(704.6 KB, January 2022)
EPA fact sheet on residential soil sampling in parts of Walnut Park and Florence-Firestone. Includes information about sampling area and how interested residents of those areas can provide permission to do the soil test. | Hoja informativa sobre el muestreo de suelo residencial de EPA en partes de Walnut Park y Florence-Firestone, incluyendo información sobre el área de muestreo y sobre cómo los residentes interesados de esas áreas pueden dar permiso para realizar muestras de suelo.
Site Inspection Interim Sampling Report (Informe Intermedio de Muestreo de Inspección): Central Metal, Huntington Park, CA (pdf)
(12.8 MB, May 2020)
Site Inspection Interim Sampling Report (Informe Intermedio de Muestreo de Inspección) for Central Metal, 8201 Santa Fe Avenue, Huntington Park, Los Angeles County, California. EPA ID No.: CAN000903324; USACE Contract Number: W912P7-16-D-0001; Document Control Number: 20074.067.024.0003.01.
Site Inspection Report Completed
The site investigation, which started in 2019 and concluded in 2023, evaluated groundwater beneath and around the site along with soils data at the site and in the residential neighborhoods. This site investigation was documented in a Site Inspection Report, which determined that the site does not qualify for inclusion on the National Priorities List (NPL) of Superfund sites.
For questions regarding residential soil sampling, contact: EPA Contractor Community Liaison Saul Talamantes
For technical questions about sampling contact: EPA Site Assessment Manager Matt Mitguard
For other questions, contact: EPA Community Involvement Coordinator Stephanie Steinbrecher
If you have health questions, please contact: Los Angeles Dept. of Public Health Alberto Rivadeneyra Jr.